Flash Fiction: The Car

In my experience, flash fiction has really helped me find inspiration and creativity in the most insignificant aspects of my day. It's a great way to stimulate your mind and broaden your perspective on the days you find yourself unable to write.

How to write flash fiction:

Step 1. Find a prompt or detail. This could be anything from a person in a crowd that stands out to you or a prompt you find on a website.

Step 2. Set a timer for 10 minutes.

Step 3. List as many ideas as you can about that prompt or topic. Each idea or image can only be one sentence long.

Step 4. Choose an idea that you can see in your head the clearest or like the best from the ones that you listed.

Step 5. List some details about that idea. What time of day is it? What is to the left side of the character? What is to the right side? Where are they? Is there any light? Is there any source of heat? What season is it? Who else is there?

Step 6. Set a timer for 10 minutes

Step 7. Start writing about this idea using the details you listed. However, there are a few rules you must follow while writing. First, you cannot hit the backspace button, even if you made a spelling or grammar mistake. This button is absolutely off-limits. Second, you cannot stop writing no matter what. Even if your mind comes to a standstill, close your eyes and keep writing, whether you are trying to continue your story are just keep typing words that come to your head. Just keep going.

Writing can be really really hard, especially if you have no inspiration. But you have to force yourselves to keep writing because, just like anything, it is something that requires practice. That being said, this is my very messy attempt on writing about a car:

The first time I saw her, she pulled up to the side of the road in an expensive-looking red car. The sun was not as pitiless that day, and a few clouds lazily floated across the sky. Everything seemed to glow golden, and that was precisely why I remembered her. When her engine cut off and she stepped out of the car in that long crimson gown, she looked like a bronzed goddess. Chocolate hair tumbled down her back like a waterfall and gleamed chestnut in the sun. Her heels clicked against the road and when she started to stalk towards me, it was as if she held all the haughtiness in the world on her shoulders.

I had been staring at the sea below the cliff. From where I was sitting, the gulls' cries floated up and echoed against the orange cliff. I felt her presence behind me and her glare boring holes into my back. A small smile crept onto my face.

"You'll fall down the cliff if you come too close," I said without turning to face her. I knew why she came.

"Where is he?" She made it sound more like a statement than a question.

I turned around to face her. "What did you bring me?"

She tossed a gold necklace in my direction quite rudely. I caught it, inspected it, and threw it back at her. "This isn't valuable to you. I don't need it."

She glared at me again. "Some prophet you are," she muttered quietly, and I grinned. She removed a cheap bracelet with a heart charm from her wrist and placed it on the ground next to me.

"He's dead."
She was quiet for a while. Finally, she murmured, "How?"

I tilted my head, watching her facial expressions. "Suicide." I turned around again and we both stared out at the sea.

The sun's heat felt a little stronger when she zoomed off in her pricey car. I climbed up to my cave in the rocks behind me, thinking of all the people who came to me in hopes of receiving good news and turned away, heartbroken. I suppose that was why I isolated myself to begin with. It was easier to tell people what they did not want to hear when you are not as used to empathy.

The second time I saw her, she was dead. She had driven off the very cliff her lover had leaped off just a few nights ago after I revealed to him the news of her engagement to a suitor. The car was crushed.

When her body and the metal scraps were taken away, I placed her bracelet on the photo he gave to me earlier and went out to sit at the edge of the cliff, staring at the empty, empty sea.

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